A & O Manual 3.02 Protection Against Sexual Harassment
Sexual Harassment is a violation of the Gallaudet University policy, 3.02 Protection Against Sexual Harassment, to engage in sexual harassment of any kind. For the purposes of this policy, sexual harassment, with or without sexual conduct, is defined, as in the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Guidelines, as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when, for example:
- submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment;
- submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual; or
- such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
Sexual Harassment generally falls into three categories: quid pro quo, hostile work environment and third party harassment:
Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment is a form of harassment that may include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or other verbal or physical conduct based on the gender of the affected employee when: (a) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment; (b) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment decisions. It shall be a violation of this policy for any person to use his or her authority to make any sexual advance toward an individual over whom the person is authorized to make, recommend or otherwise to influence personnel actions; to grant, recommend, or refuse to take personnel action because of an employee's gender or sexual orientation or in exchange for sexual favors; or to take or fail to take a personnel action as reprisal against any employee for rejecting or reporting a sexual advance. Sexual advances or requests for sexual favors can be in the form of either expressed or implied comments, writings, or actions.
Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment is a form of harassment that may include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, which has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment. Gender-based harassment may give rise to a claim of a hostile environment whether or not sexual activity or language is involved, if it has the purpose or effect of abusing, devaluing or subordinating the members of one sex and it adversely affects an individual's employment opportunities.
Third Party Sexual Harassment is unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature or based on sex that is not directed at an individual but is a part of an individual's work environment.
Examples of Prohibited Behaviors That May Constitute Sexual Harassment include, but are not limited to:
- Generalized gender-based remarks and comments.
- Unwanted physical contact such as intentional touching, grabbing, pinching, brushing against another's body or impeding or blocking movement.
- Verbal or written sexually suggestive or obscene comments, jokes or propositions including letters, notes, e- mail, invitations, gestures or inappropriate comments about a person's clothing.
- Visual contact, such as leering or staring at another's body, gesturing, displaying sexually suggestive objects, cartoons, posters, magazines or pictures of scantily clad individuals.
- Explicit or implicit suggestions of sex by a supervisor or manager in return for a favorable employment action such as hiring, compensation, promotion, or retention.
- Suggesting or implying that failure to accept a request for a date or sex would result in an adverse employment consequence with respect to any employment practice such as performance evaluations or promotional opportunity.
- Continuing to engage in certain behaviors of a sexual nature after an objection has been raised by the target of such inappropriate behavior.
Any employee who believes that she/he has been subjected to any form of prohibited discrimination/harassment, including sexual harassment, or who witnesses another being subjected to such harassment or discrimination is encouraged to promptly report the incident(s) to either their supervisor or directly to Director of Equal Opportunity Programs.
Supervisors should make every effort to maintain a work environment that is free from any form of prohibited discrimination/harassment. Supervisors are expected to take all allegations of discrimination/harassment, including sexual harassment, seriously, and to immediately refer the matter to the individual(s) responsible for receiving such complaints.
All investigations of discrimination/harassment claims shall be conducted in a way that respects, to the extent possible, the privacy of all the persons involved. The investigations shall be conducted in a prompt, thorough and impartial manner. The results of the investigation shall be forwarded to the respective administrative officer to make a final decision as to whether a violation of the policy has been substantiated.
Where discrimination/harassment is found to have occurred, the University shall take prompt and appropriate remedial action to stop the discrimination/harassment and deter its reoccurrence.
The remedial action taken may include counseling, training, intervention, mediation, and/or the initiation of disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.